Virgin install of OpenSuSE on a (non-technical) friend’s Dell Latitude E6510 – trying to make a convert to the Linux cause, but it’s going badly. He (while struggling to find connection in a cafe with an overwhelmed wifi router) managed to completely kill network management. Trying to switch the machine to “Traditional/ifup” and back to “Managed” hasn’t helped. I’m not familiar enough with this distro’s tools to straighten it out. If I were on my usual distro (MEPIS) I’d have had this problem licked in minutes. I don’t want to reinstall his machine, but if that’s the fastest fix, I’ll do it.
# /etc/init.d/network start
will restart the network. But then I am not sure what broke, so I am not sure what is needed to fix it.
As Networkmanager is made to make a desktop end-user able to manage network connections, it might be of value to tell which desktop environment the end-user is using (KDE, Gnome, …).
And then I guess that starting Network manager from the main menu (e.g. Kmenu for KDE) should be possible. But that is more of a logical guess from me because I do not use Network manage.
As you suggested, it would be useful if the OP tells us which opensuse version and which desktop.
As for NetworkManager - there are two components. There’s the main NetworkManager daemon that runs as root, and is started as part of system startup. And then there is the desktop applet that communicates with the main daemon. It is not completely clear which of those is not running.
When you switch to “ifup” mode, the main NetworkManager daemon is shutdown. When booting, the main NetworkManager daemon does not start if you are setup for “ifup” mode. Switching back to NetworkManager mode, the NetworkManager daemon should be started, though it sometimes isn’t (a systemd problem?). When configured for NetworkManager, on system boot the main NetworkManager daemon should automatically start.
The desktop applet will depend on the desktop. In my experience, the applet for gnome is normally set to run. However, it runs silently if it does not detect the presence of the main NetworkManager daemon. Whether to start the applet for KDE can be configured in the KDE personal settings (“Startup and Shutdown”), and whether the applet should show an icon in the tray can be configured with tray settings.